Our transition to 2021 is more important than in previous years. That’s because it is.
Introduce yourself for the first time she gather in a group with no risk of Covid-19. When addressing your colleagues, customers, friends and loved ones personally. How will you feel Multiply that by Billions of interactionsworldwide.
Few will notice this in 2021 We will see that Last first reopening after a pandemic of our lifetimes. Sure, we could suffer future contagions, but this year will be the only one first We will endure reopening.
For future recoveries, we will use our personal experiences, the successes and failures of 2021, as a guide. In this case, however, we are flying blind.
The tremors of an imminent reopening will play a huge role in our psyche, which is annoyed by ambiguous schedules. Without a single magical date of freedom, we will maneuver through fits and launches, waves and retreats. (Plans could even be derailed by new, vaccine-resistant strains … but so far, so good.)
The big unwind
Like feathers coiled tightly our reopening life becomes unleash colossal potential energy. The “big wind down” – from suppressed personal desires to central bank balance sheets – will create both chaos and opportunity.
How do you want harness the energy of reopening? Consider the following:
· Which goals will you prioritize – and why?
· What changes should you keep from 2020?
· What about the past that you should be regaining?
· What does a reopening mean for each of your stakeholders?
· Who needs help and how can you help in a relevant manner?
· How will you muster the agility to react when conditions change?
Leading organizations have been dealing with these questions for months. If this isn’t the case for you, then don’t waste any more time. Don’t miss the unprecedented opportunity to return in 2021.
Return to a new normal
Our life will never be normal again. Many conditions, expectations, and behaviors have changed. Who among us would like to reclaim a daily commute lasting several hours?
However, as economies open up, the demand for personal activities, from meetings and air travel to parties and concerts, can be expected to surge. So we could experience a temporary, even significant one. decline in online activity. Do not be fooled. Think of this as a backlash rather than a trend.
The big unwind will manifest as a dramatic, temporary return to pre-pandemic behavior. (With the ecxeption of very large multi-day events – tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of people. Few – like Burning Man – will survive.)
Expect this backlash to be a speeding of the unstoppable digital transformation of our lives. In-person activity will continue to have compelling benefits of immersiveness and intimacy – but not forever. Imagine how much better online will be in five years. Or a decade.
Online, personal, and hybrid experiences will evolve together, but digital features are evolving much faster than personal ones. Electrons are lighter than people.
Many commentators advocate a return to “normal”. While this feels like the correct nickname, think about what it might or might not mean.
The term “normality” was coined by US President Warren G. Harding for his post-World War I campaign in 1920, in the midst of the final stages of the Spanish flu pandemic, which killed over 100 million people worldwide.
The uncomfortable relevance of the word includes the fact that Harding, one of America’s “most popular” presidents during his tenure, is remembered as one of the worst presidents in US history. After his untimely death in office in 1923, a series of scandals, corruption and mismanagement eroded his disastrous cabinet of cronies. Most historians agree that Harding was unaware of the wrongdoing, but that’s not a great defense. A memorial planned in his honor was finally canceled without fanfare.
Regardless of your political or political bias, everyone agrees that today we are getting out of one of the most controversial presidencies in American history. This active split – exemplified by the idiotic politicization of wearing masks – hampered America’s ability to rise to the Covid-19 challenge. Let’s do better in 2021.
The reopening affects us all around the world
While some countries weathered the crisis better than others, the way each of us copes with reopening is affecting us all.
Some East Asian countries such as China, South Korea and Japan are known to have coped far better with the pandemic. They all “benefited” (both accurately and ironically) from previous virus scourges. They were better prepared and more proactive than the West.
Even for these countries, new insights into the effectiveness of their management by the pandemic will emerge. China’s own disease control centers reported in late December that actual infection rates were likely far higher than originally reported.
While some countries faced epidemics before Covid-19, the reopening of 2021 will be very different because it is truly global. Unlike other newer pathogens, Covid-19 has ravaged our entire world – trading partners, geopolitical allies and opponents, homelands and houses of the diaspora.
This is shown by the fact that the world is not connected (e.g. Europe), is opaque (e.g. China) and sometimes even pathetic ad hominem (e.g. USA) Pandemic reactions, too few of us recognize the profound effects of our global networking. While we are “all together” – viruses don’t care who you are – we have Not was there together.
Rabbi Irwin Kula with Rob Wolcott at TWIN Global 2019
Rabbi Irwin Kula, a good friend, TWINian, and leading advocate of faith-based entrepreneurship, told me this for the first time last year. “Everyone says we’re all together.” For real? I do not see it. At a time when we needed to stand together most, our nation’s political divisions only got worse. “
Decisions for 2021 … and beyond
Each of us is faced with choices that are specific to this moment in history. What lessons will we learn from our decisions and behaviors in 2020? What habits will we adopt? What could we overcome?
Like many of you, I traveled extensively before the pandemic – over 200,000 miles a year for over a decade. Cant wait to get back in the air (really … @United); However, I have made a commitment to family and myself to travel only when it matters. Substantial value arises from immersion and personal human engagement. No more 3-hour meetings at the Frankfurt Hilton Airport.
How do we go beyond individual decisions together go beyond this pandemic?
Preparing for future pathogenic threats provides a unique opportunity to restore trust between nations. 2021 is not just our last reopening after a pandemic. It has potential be the last.
While we cannot eliminate the threat of new pandemics – evolution is an agile goal – we can be far smarter. Complexity theorist David Krakauer, CEO of the Santa Fe Institute, said during TWIN Tech 2020: “Pathogens spread not only because of their innate properties, but also because of our behavior.”
How we navigate in 2021 will be far more important than anything we did or didn’t do in 2020. Viruses will be viruses. The challenge for each of us is to make the best possible progress through a turbulent, dangerous and opportunity filled year. Our collective challenge is to together– build more resilient and viable communities, societies and world.
How are you going to channel the energy of The Great Unwinding? For now, make a list of the people who miss you the most. Let them know that you will be with them soon.